Casper Man Could Face up to 120 Years in Prison on Meth Conspiracy, Delivery Charges
A man arrested in December on a felony warrant in a case handled by the Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation could spend over a century behind bars if convicted of three drug charges brought against him Thursday in Natrona County District Court.
Terrance William Brown, 38, is accused of conspiring to deliver methamphetamine and two counts of delivering methamphetamine. Typically, a person charged with those crimes could face up to 60 years in prison and $75,000 in fines if convicted.
But prosecutors say since Brown was previously convicted of similar crimes -- he was sentenced to three years supervised probation and 60 days in jail with an underlying two- to four-year prison sentence in 2006 -- he could face up to 120 years in prison and $150,000 in fines under state statute, which allows for penalties to be doubled in such cases.
According to a DCI affidavit, special agents discovered a drug trafficking ring in the Casper area in February 2016. Agents used various surveillance techniques, search warrants and information from confidential informants as they pursued the alleged traffickers.
In June 2016, an informant told an agent that they bought methamphetamine and heroin from a person known as "Rhino." The informant also reportedly said they saw a large amount of heroin at a residence in Natrona County.
On Oct. 17, another confidential source told a DCI agent that they had re-distributed meth for another person between the months of August and October. That source also said someone involved in the ring drove to Utah to buy meth and bring it back to the Casper area for distribution, according to the affidavit.
DCI agents on Oct. 8 executed a search warrant on a vehicle and allegedly recovered 5.5 grams of cocaine and 2.3 grams of heroin. When a suspect was arrested 9.5 grams of methamphetamine was reportedly found in the area in which he was located.
A separate DCI affidavit says an alleged leader of the drug trafficking group approached a confidential informant with the intent of selling methamphetamine.
Agents used that confidential informant to conduct controlled methamphetamine purchases. The informant turned the meth, which weighed about 10 grams, over to DCI agents.
Court documents say Brown was arrested Dec. 24 after a Casper police officer saw a maroon Lincoln passenger car westbound on CY Avenue with plates that did not belong on that vehicle.
The officer saw Brown was the driver and sole occupant of the car, recognizing him from previous law enforcement contacts.
According to the affidavit, the officer was advised that Brown had been known to carry weapons and methamphetamine in his vehicle and on his person, so the officer discretely followed Brown and called for backup.
Brown stopped in front of a house and went inside. Officers arrived and searched the house, reportedly finding Brown hiding in the attic.
A DCI special agent told Casper police officers at the home that Brown was the suspect in a methamphetamine investigation. He allegedly sold methamphetamine out of his vehicle several times in the previous two weeks and typically carried both meth and firearms, including handguns and semi-automatic rifles.
Officers later searched the vehicle Brown had been driving and reportedly found a methamphetamine pipe, a small container with methamphetamine residue inside, a large bundle of jeweler's baggies in the coat pocket of a Harley-Davidson jacket, an open bottle of Black Velvet on the passenger seat of the vehicle, a .40-caliber bullet and a small safe.
Brown pleaded not guilty to the three charges brought against him in court Thursday.
His defense attorney asked the court to reduce Brown's bond from $150,000 to $50,000, saying that if the court would not reduce Brown's bond, Brown would prefer to simply be held without bond.
Judge Catherine Wilking decided remanding Brown to custody pending trial, set for May 1, was the best option.